Akbayan Senator Risa Hontiveros on Saturday called
House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez's push for a Senate-less constituent assembly (Con-ass) as an attempt to establish a "Pweradalism."
Hontiveros also expressed her contempt on Alvarez's threat that provinces which would not support the President’s move to federalism would receive "zero budgets."
“Pweradalism ang sinusulong ng administrasyong Duterte. Etsa-pwera ang Senado sa proseso ng pagbabago ng konstitusyon. Etsa-pwera ang mamamayan at ang kanilang lehitimong interes at kapakanan. Etsa-pwera ang mga local government units (LGUs) na may agam agam. At etsa-pwera ang demokrasya at karapatang pantao," Hontiveros said.
Hontiveros explained that charter change is a fundamental and necessary component of any attempt to reform our political system. However, the Senator said that the Duterte government's plan to change the constitution through a con-ass goes against the interest of democracy and active citizenship, especially with a Congress where the heavy hand of the Executive is obviously seen.
"I have my doubts on the capacity of this administration to carry out an inclusive, democratic process for charter change. Ngayon pa lang, we are force-fed their brand of federalism that raises a lot of problematic issues, and do not seem to value people-led and participatory fiscal processes," Hontiveros said.
"It is very clear that the agenda of amendment, through a con-ass, is to facilitate the transition to Duterte's 'pweradalism', which will impact greatly on term limits and the composition of the legislature, including the present legislature. I urge the people to oppose this move. Hindi pupuwede na ietsa-pwera ng gobyernong ito ang tinig at boses ng mamamayan," Hontiveros ended. #
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